Ty Toy Company “Pinchers the Lobster” Beanie Babies Stuffed Toy
Pros: Small and silly. Displays well in any environment. Currently retired and just sits around the house. No Maine residence should be without one.
Cons: Won’t do chores. Cannot be eaten, should an apocalypse occur.
My volunteer days at the local nursing home involved many diversions – the one I enjoyed most was calling the Bingo games in the Activities Room. No matter how loudly the numbers were projected, there were always one or two players who required an additional prompt. Napping was allowed and expected – due to the game’s inherent thrills and lightning speed.
While my mom was a resident, she became a Bingo savant who often traded-up in the popular post-game bargaining round. She didn’t need no stinkin’ lavender sachets or perfume samples – Beanie Babies were the legal tender of this crowd – and the prize closet had an unlimited supply.
One of the post-Bingo negotiations netted Pinchers the Lobster, who had been nicknamed “Larry” – unlike the one-syllable Crunch the Shark – whose name has flow and needs no improvement. Until recently, the rediscovered cuddly crustacean had lived in a cardboard box since moving day – an event that occurred more than six years ago.
At a weight of 3.1 ounces and measuring 7.5 inches in length, “Larry” would qualify for catch-and-release, were he born an edible Maine lobster. Instead of being spiny and creepy, he’s just plushy and full-o-beans. Even those beady little eyes are exempted from the fright of his prototype’s unlovely pair.
The Ty Toy folks created “Pinchers” in 1993 and he’s already been retired – nice work if you can get it. Seeing that his monthly expenses are nil, no state or federal pension is available. Like the cat, he spends his time sitting-around the house looking cute – the only difference being that he doesn’t eat his weight in food every month and has no need for a “lobster box” in the guest bath.
Even though his fleeting fame has ebbed, Pinchers the Lobster is available at a variety of vendors at equally disparate price-points. One seller claims he is so rare, he merits a $500.00 (US) price tag. This person should check the multitude of pages at eBay, where current prices begin at $1.49 (plus shipping).
Redder than Lenin and cute as can be, Pinchers the Lobster is the crown jewel of many a spirited Bingo negotiation. Personally, I am equally smitten with Patti Platypus – whose scintillating purple and yellow motif clashes with everything virtually everywhere it’s placed. What better way to say you’ve arrived?